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PLoS One. 2019 Mar 6;14(3):e0210102. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0210102. eCollection 2019.

Pneumonia severity index in viral community acquired pneumonia in adults.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Keimyung University Dongsan Hospital, Daegu, Republic of Korea.
Department of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, Sungso Hospital, Andong, Republic of Korea.


Pneumonia severity index (PSI) is an important scoring system that can assess the severity of community acquired pneumonia and determine admission status. However, there is a lack of research on whether this scoring system can be applied to viral community acquired pneumonia. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of PSI in viral community acquired pneumonia. This retrospective cohort study included 1,434 adult patients (aged ≥18 years) who were admitted to the emergency department of a university hospital during 2013-2015 because of community-acquired pneumonia. Viral infections were diagnosed by multiplex PCR. Patients diagnosed with non-viral community-acquired pneumonia were included in the control group (N = 1,173). The main outcome was 30-day all-cause mortality. multivariate Cox regression analyses were performed to calculate the risk of death. Respiratory viruses were detected in 261 (18.2%) patients with community-acquired pneumonia. Two types of respiratory viruses were detected in 7 cases. Of the 254 cases detected with only one virus, 62 were influenza A, 18 were influenza B, 65 were rhinovirus, 35 were respiratory syncytial virus, 25 were metapneumovirus, 20 were parainfluenza, 17 were coronavirus, 7 were bocavirus, and 5 were adenovirus. Mortality was not significantly different between patients with respiratory virus and those without respiratory virus; the 30-day all-cause mortality rates were 20.3% and 22.4%, respectively (P = 0.45). Mortality rate increased with an increasing PSI score with or without respiratory viral infection. Pulmonary severity index was significantly associated with mortality adjusted for respiratory virus detection (hazard ratio = 1.024, 95% confidence interval = 1.020-1.028). Pneumonia severity index score is an important factor for assessing the prognosis of patients with community-acquired pneumonia, regardless of respiratory virus detection.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

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